Eurogroup reaches agreement on final loan and debt relief for Greece

Eurogroup reaches agreement on final loan and debt relief for Greece

Under the agreed debt-relief plan, maturities on €96.6 billion ($112 billion) of loans Greece has received from its second bailout would be pushed out by 10 years.

The ministers needed to finalize a deal between Greece and its global creditors that would allow it to safely emerge from its third and final bailout program on August 20 and face the markets again.

"But there are some reforms where there needs to be deep follow-up going forward", the source said.

Bruno Le Maire told the media after the late Thursday night meeting that the Eurozone nations have reached an agreement on the bailout program for Greece.

Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos said the debt relief deal makes Greece's debt sustainable, allowing the country to return to debt markets. "It is a historic moment".

In addition, the Euro group gave the green light to release to Athens a 15 billion euros (17.4 billion US dollars) final loan installment of the 86 billion euro package sealed three years ago, which will be used to cover some of its debts to the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank.

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The creditors also agreed to a final disbursement of €15 billion, aimed to help Greece repay arrears, finance maturing debt and build up a cash buffer of €24.1 billion that will help it access financial markets.

"The Greek crisis ends here tonight", said EU Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici, after marathon talks in Luxembourg.

"We will continue to look at whether the reforms are sticking", Dutch Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra said on Friday.

Still, Moscovici said, "at last after eight years of hard reforms, of tough adjustments in our programs, Greece will be capable of moving on its own two feet". The left-wing politician had said at the beginning of his first term in office that he would only wear a tie when Greece had settled its debt problems, and in his speech, Tsipras hailed Friday's deal in Luxembourg as a landmark decision.

To make a deal possible, Greek lawmakers last week pushed through a last batch of economic reforms required by the creditors, including pension cuts to health care and tax reforms. The profits came from a range of deals - including the Securities Market Program (SMP), a now-defunct bond-buying program initiated by the European Central Bank in 2010 that Germany and other members of the eurozone backed to keep Greece's economy afloat, according to German Press Agency (DPA).

Tsakalotos voiced confidence that Greece will be able to tap bond markets "very soon", but said the precise details have not yet been determined.

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